Schedule 9 - Repeals

NHS Reform and Health Care Professions Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:30 am on 13th December 2001.

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Photo of John Hutton John Hutton Minister of State, Department of Health, Minister of State (Department of Health) (Health) 2:30 am, 13th December 2001

I beg to move amendment No. 259, in page 81, line 5, at end insert—

'Health Services

and Public Health Act

1968.

In section 63(5B), the ''and''

at the end of paragraph (bb).'.

Photo of Ann Widdecombe Ann Widdecombe Conservative, Maidstone and The Weald

With this it will be convenient to take Government amendments Nos. 260 to 264.

Photo of John Hutton John Hutton Minister of State, Department of Health, Minister of State (Department of Health) (Health)

This is another fiendishly descriptive part of the Bill. The amendments add to the table in schedule 9, which in turn lists all the repeals provided for in other clauses and schedules to the Bill. The Acts referred to are, I hope, self-evident, but I draw the Committee's attention to amendment No. 264, which

in a curious and somewhat inexplicable way—I shall try to explain in a moment—repeals provisions in the current Bill. I suspect that that must be a first.

Reference is made to amendments to section 15 of the National Health Service Act 1977 that are added to paragraph 2 of schedule 2 by amendment No. 99, which the Committee has already approved. We have already amended the Bill in Committee, which is what the amendments to schedule 9 try to reflect. Reference is also made to amendments to section 18 of the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990 through amendment No. 100. Both the relevant amendments provide for their own repeal. They are amendment provisions that are themselves repealed by provisions in the Health Act 1999 that have yet to come into force.

I realise that a fog is probably descending on the Committee, but I shall carry on. I should warn the hon. Member for West Chelmsford that if he asks me any questions about this matter, I shall definitely have to correspond with him.

The amendments provide for their own repeal, as well as for the repeal of the substantive provisions that they amend. In summary, the amendments are further repeals that take account of the provisions in the Bill. In essence, they are tidying-up provisions. Schedule 9 lists in tabular form all the repeals included in other clauses and schedules to the Bill, and amendments Nos. 259 to 264 simply add to that table. They are all consequential repeals, which are necessary in the light of amendments to the Bill that we accepted in Committee. I do not propose to detain the Committee by discussing them individually. As I said, the Acts referred to are, I hope, self-evident.

Photo of Simon Burns Simon Burns Shadow Spokesperson (Health)

I thank the Minister for that somewhat unusual explanation of his amendments. He is probably right in saying that this may be a first, in that amendment No. 264 amends the Bill before it has even reached the statute book, but why do we need to do that? Why could we not table the relevant amendment to schedule 2 on Report or in another place, thereby avoiding this unusual procedure?

Photo of John Hutton John Hutton Minister of State, Department of Health, Minister of State (Department of Health) (Health)

Those are options. The amendments could indeed be tabled on Report, in another place or anywhere else.

Photo of Simon Burns Simon Burns Shadow Spokesperson (Health)

I was talking about just this one.

Photo of John Hutton John Hutton Minister of State, Department of Health, Minister of State (Department of Health) (Health)

This one could be tabled anywhere. It is a perfectly legitimate amendment, and the Government are entitled to make such changes at any point in the Bill's legislative passage. However, we wanted to do so in Committee because this is the time and place that such amendments are usually tabled. As I understand it, they are simply consequential, tidying-up amendments that are necessary because of changes already made to the Bill through amendments Nos. 99 and 100 in particular. They go no deeper than that. Making such changes in Committee, on Report or in

another place is a question of judgment for Ministers. I felt that it would be helpful to consider them in Committee.

Amendment agreed to.

Amendments made: No. 260, in page 81, line 8, column 2, at end insert—

'In section 22(1A), the ''or'' at the end of paragraph (c).
In section 28A(1), the ''and'' at the end of paragraph (a).'.
No. 261, in page 81, line 13, column 2, at end insert—
'In section 51(3), the ''and'' at the end of paragraph (bb).'.
No. 262, in page 81, line 15, column 2, at end insert—
'In section 125, the ''and'' at the end of paragraph (bb).'.
No. 263, in page 81, line 23, at end insert—
'Acquisition of Land Act 1981.In section 16(3), the ''and'' at the end of paragraph (b).
Health Service Commissioners Act 1993.In section 2, in subsection (1)(da), ''established for areas in England''; and in subsection (2)(a), ''whose areas are in Wales''.
Government of Wales Act 1998.In Schedule 5, in paragraph 20, ''for an area in, or consisting of, Wales''.
In Schedule 17, in paragraph 12, ''for an area in, or consisting of, Wales''.'.
No. 264, in page 81, line 35, at end insert—
'National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002 (c. )In Schedule 2, in paragraph 2, sub-paragraphs (3) to (5); and paragraph 55.'.—[Mr. Hutton.]

Schedule 9, as amended, agreed to.Clause 36Regulations and orders